Probiotics have received a lot of press lately, and it is claimed that they can do so much for the body, way beyond gut health.
Claiming they can help you sleep, improve heart health, improve immunity, and reduce anxiety, one of the additional claims is that they can help with weight loss.
Researchers have recently started looking at claims that improving gut biodiversity can help with general overall body mass along with brain health.
You can look at some other product reviews I have written on my probiotics for men article.
I’ve recently come across a product called Bio X4 from Nucific, a hugely popular (on social media) product which claims to help with a clutch of digestive issues and boost metabolism.
The Nucific brand itself looks like an example of these cure-all products we are now all too familiar with (weight-loss plus probiotic), and their website is structured so you jump straight onto a page to purchase the product.
No preamble here, just pure sales.
In fact, there’s very little else in terms of substance to the site.
Stay on the homepage long enough and you gradually get driven mad by the pop-up that tells you someone has just made a purchase.
The branding is clear and unfussy, which is appealing, although it isn’t immediately clear what the product is, so this could potentially be a little confusing or misleading. It is simply labeled as a diet supplement. In fact, there’s so little information, I don’t even know why the product is called Bio X4.
Perhaps if I do some further digging I might be able to find out more.
Background on Nucific
Dr Amy Lee is a bariatric doctor – with degrees from the University of Illinois and UCLA – who also happens to have a popular video on Facebook regarding diet, weight loss and appetite. This video is accompanied by an infomercial for Nucific Bio X4, which were you not to spot, you would be otherwise unaware that she was trying to sell a product.
What she says in her video is quite scientifically correct: limit intake of salt and sugar, eat more whole foods, combine good fats with fiber. It’s all very above-board. But she IS trying to sell a product, a weight-loss, appetite suppressant pill (Bio X4).
It’s hard to get more leverage on Nucific. There aren’t a lot of reviews on health sites. There do appear to be a lot of ‘fake sellers’ on Amazon. There isn’t really much out there except the views and advice of Dr Amy Lee.
On social media you would be forgiven for thinking it is the next big thing, so I’m going to take a closer look at the ingredients in Bio X4 and what reviews I can find to see if there’s more to it than meets the eye.
What Ingredients inside Bio X4?
The capsule consists of a probiotic blend, dietary enzymes, and caffeine.
Let me just say again that this formula is not ground-breaking. There are plenty of products out there that combine probiotics with caffeine and digestive enzymes and claim to boost metabolism and aid gut health (with the intended outcome being weight loss or better weight management).
So, what’s inside the Bio X4 formula?
The capsule is made of;
- A probiotic blend (4 billion CFU/capsule): Lactobacillus blend, L.acidophilus, L.rhamnosus, L.plantarum. Bifidobacterum blend; B.lactis, B.animalis.
- Digestive enzyme blend: 43mg (Amylase, Bromelain, Lipase)
- Weight management blend: Green Tea Extract (100mg) (50% ECGC)
- Craving control blend: Slimaluma (Caralluma Fimbriata extract) (166mg).
Here are the full Bio X4 nutritional facts from the label.
Are There Any Bio X4 Side Effects?
Fortunately, Nucific Bio X4 causes ‘no known side effects’.
According to their own website FAQs: it;
is made up of pure ingredients. They only help your system and are gluten-free, allergen-free capsules, so you can take them no matter what your diet restrictions may be
This should be reassuring, however the more quizzical amongst us might be asking whether something which is a powerful digestive aid should actually cause some sort of side effect.
Research into green tea extract suggests that long term use may affect liver toxicity. Canadian health promoters are looking into claims that liver damage has been caused by supplements containing green tea extract.
Does Bio X4 Actually Work?
BioX4 claims to work in the following ways:
Reduce cravings, promotes weight management, supports smoother digestion, boosts metabolism.
These are claims that will appeal to a large number of consumers, especially in the U.S. where people weigh, on average, around 10kg more than European counterparts. So there are big problems to be solved, and big bucks for people who can sell a product that achieves this.
But for every claim, there is an equally compelling counter-argument.
Firstly the pills are supposed to help reduce cravings. Assuming this means food cravings, picture this – you are supposed to take the pill with a meal. Ta-dah! No food craving! (because you are already eating).
But seriously, the feelings of satiety will depend on the food you are eating at each meal and their passage through the gut. I personally don’t see how a supplement is going to affect this, but Bio X4 claims that lessening cravings is one of the factors that could lead to weight loss. Ok. But this is a lifestyle change and one that takes more than a supplement to change.
There is plenty more to discuss in this article on Healthline about cravings, satiety and weight-loss. Much of the medical evidence shows that in order to maintain a feeling of fullness you need to eat protein-rich food and combine it with high fiber foods to ensure appropriate passage through the gut (not least to help with fat metabolism and reduce cholesterol, which soluble fiber has a hand in).
Eating an appropriate amount of – for example – psyllium husk should do this. Also, this can help with satiety.
There is some evidence (from one study) on Caralluma Fimbriata to suggest it can suppress the appetite and it has been used traditionally (for example in Ayurvedic medicine) for this aspect. Studies have looked at 1000mg daily doses. So it is unlikely that even with three pills a day you would be achieving this.
The study also suggests that it may take up to a month for Caralluma extract to help in appetite suppression.
As for the digestive enzymes, these are necessary to help the probiotics do their work. There is mixed evidence supporting the supplementation and efficacy of probiotics for health, but a good starting point is studies looking at their use in treating disorders such as IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).
This could be because they aid digestion (see above claim of Bio X4 to ‘help ensure a smoother, more comfortable digestion’) but I would question why you wouldn’t take a specific IBS-related digestive aid if you had these particular syndromes, which may be better studied for effectiveness.
Also, there is a worrying trend in using incorrect probiotics to treat certain pathologies and this is another reason why it’s important to check that your probiotics are the correct strains, used in the correct amounts, and whether they are living at the time of purchase – see Examine.
How probiotics are manufactured, stored and transported are all important factors when you take them.
I wrote more about this on other reviews, and suffice to say I’m not fully sold on the notion of healthy individuals taking supplementation for gut bacteria for weight loss when the evidence suggests it is only helpful in certain cases.
Lastly, let’s look at caffeine.
The caffeine in this product claims to ‘boost metabolism’. This is by no means the first of its kind to suggest caffeine affects weight loss through boosting metabolism, so where can we find out more?
The ECGC mentioned on the Bio X4 site which is found in green tea has been studied but the benefits are yet to be fully understood.
Examine.com says the following:
The benefits of green tea catechins on lipid oxidation and related fat-burning pathways are achieved in a dose-dependent manner. Significant effects in humans are noted only at high doses, such as 400-500mg EGCG equivalent per day (most Green Tea Extracts are roughly 50% EGCG). Fat burning effects are highly synergistic, almost dependent, on not consuming caffeine habitually.
The study further suggests “Green tea catechins, notably EGCG, seem to be poorly absorbed in the intestines mostly due to there not being a transporter that takes them up from the gut into the body.”
There are also studies that suggest Green tea may lead to liver problems, and Health Canada has recently changed its stance on the safety of products using Green Tea extract.
But remember, as the Bio X4 site says, all individuals are unique and results will vary!!
Bio X4 Customer Reviews
I’m not sure about the reviews on Amazon as I can’t verify the product. The reviews on the Nucific Bio X4 site are, however, glowing, claiming the following:
Less bloating4 stars
Feeling great5 stars
Game changer for me5 stars
Feeling like a new man5 stars
Aided my diet plan5 stars
How to Take Bio X4
You take one capsule with each meal (three times a day). You can take two capsules with every meal but you are advised not to exceed 6 capsules per day. The website doesn’t explain why, but remember there are not supposed to be any side effects!
I say this in jest. You should of course check the ingredients thoroughly before taking any dietary supplement.
Any Money Back Guarantee?
Nucific offers a 90-day money-back guarantee.
Where to Buy Bio X4
What’s the Cost of Bio X4?
This is one expensive product.
A single tub costs $99 at the time of writing. It works out cheaper to buy 6 tubs but considering the ingredients and the tiny servings, this is still expensive.
Also bear in mind that you can take up to 6 capsules per day, so this means a tub contains less than one-months supply!
Nucific Bio X4 FAQs
Some of the most frequently asked questions on BIO X4.
My Verdict: Bio X4
This product is really expensive, if you are looking at a simple probiotic you might consider looking elsewhere.
Taking the recommended dosage will mean it won’t last one whole month, so there’s another reason it could affect your wallet.
But more importantly, this product has made me really think carefully about health claims. Weight loss and appetite suppression are highly prized aspects of our health-obsessed society, with people constantly searching for the golden solution. But the truth, as backed up by research and medical professionals, is that lifestyle changes and exercise are essential in this triangle, not just food and nutrition.
So, if you have a gut disorder and you’re interested in looking at probiotics then please, please, speak to a medical professional before you start self-medicating with supplements that claim to support your digestive system.
And if you’re just curious, maybe start with a cheaper product. Weighing up the pros and the cons, I don’t think this is the Probiotic for me.